Flexible solar power

Thin and flexible photovoltaic materials, based on gallium arsenide, could be used to power a wide range of devices without the need to accommodate stiff and heavy solar panels. The materials might be used in future wearable technology, such as fitness trackers and smart glasses. “Our photovoltaic is about 1 micrometer thick,” explains engineer Jongho Lee of the Gwangju Institute of Science and Technology in South Korea. The team stamped the cells directly onto a flexible substrate using “cold welding” and melted a top layer of photoresist that acted as a temporary adhesive which could subsequently be removed.